Thursday, November 02, 2006

The Bone Doctor

After many years away, I've returned to a chiropractor. My neck and shoulder have been torturing me for weeks. I have trouble sleeping. I have trouble sitting in one position for too long. I have trouble at times in Pilate's. And recently I've been getting these searing hot flashes in my lower back.
So I made an appointment and visited Doctor Jeremy Goulet
Jeremy (the young man in the white shirt, I don't the smiling kid on the left!) is the son of Gary Goulet, who has been known my father since they were in college, and he's adjusted them a few times a year for nearly two decades. So I called Jeremy and told him I was looking for an old school chiropractor. One who likes to get in there and move some bones. One I don't want is somebody who is going to hook me up to a car battery and try to jolt my muscles into regaining their old physique.

After our initial consultation, he brought out the xrays and gave me not one, but two surprises. First, my lower spine, which used to have a severe curve in the lumber region (including a pinched nerve between L4 and L5) is in great shape. There's no sign I ever had any problems. He couldn't tell I spent the better part of three years getting a severe case of Scolliosis corrected. He didn't see any reason the doctors wanted to put titanium rods along my spine. It looked great. The second surprise wasn't as welcomed. My neck is definitely started to deform.

We should have seen a nice curve, like this: )

Instead, we saw a sharp angle, almost like this: >

And it is that ever collapsing angle that is impacting my neck and shoulder. My years of doing yoga in Atlanta, GA, likely corrected my lumbar region, and my workouts the past year have keep it in good shape.

So he gave me an adjustment and lit up my day. I immediately felt the difference as I was walking out of the office. My head felt lighter. The muscles in my right shoulder weren't pulling up to my ear. My right hip was coming forward. I also arced to my left, because my right side felt so much lighter and more relaxed.

I'll certainly be seeing more of the bone doctor!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Tricked and untreated

Yesterday started off with a twist. Most of it in my stomach! I'm not sure what hit me or why, but as I'm driving to work in the morning, god reached down and decided to put me and my car inside an invisible washing machine and kick up the spin cycle. Within the course of a mile, I was nauseous, dizzy, and damn near blind as I struggle to a) figure out what is going on, b) what I'm going to do, c) how can I stay on the road without killing myself or a bus load of nuns. Fortunately god took pity on me in between his obvious chuckles and guided me home safely. All the way, my hands were gripped to steering wheel to the point of my knuckles turning white and my palms slick with sweat, I kept ramming my tongue against the roof of my mouth to keep from passing out, and I was panting like an eighty year old hound dog in the middle of August.

Cindy had made it home from dropping off Meg and was opening the door to see what I'd forgotten. Then she saw my face, and the way I was struggling to stay on my feet, while simultaneously keeping my hand over my mouth to hold down the surprise visitor and using the other hand to frantically open my dress shirt. Something clued her into the fact that she needed to get out of the way and I quickly staggered to the bathroom for an intimate conversation with the commode. Between heaves, I stripped down to the bare essentials. Finally ended up on the top of our bed, nearly delirious and telling my beloved not to call 911, I'd be okay if she just left me alone for a minute.

Three hours and several almost unremembered trips to the bathroom later, I woke up on the comforter, drenched in sweat, and mumbling for Cindy to call work to let them know I was alive, but not by the scientific measure of the word. And then I left the realm of the waking for another hour.

That was yesterday. And Halloween was little more than me sitting by the front door with my head in my hands, shuffling to bring a plastic pumpkin full of treats to the nearly three dozen goblins and ghouls who somehow knew to knock as loudly as possible and to scream their demands for candy at the top of their lungs. How my brain managed not to rupture from the onslaught, I may never know.

Monday, January 09, 2006

A Painful First

I'm still exhausted but now I'm depressed, too. Cindy and I did something today we never wanted to do. We put the kids in Day Care.

We went seven years and purposely worked opposite shifts so that we did not have to let somebody else watch our kids in any environment outside of our house. But we don't have any choice with our current schedule. It is only for a couple of hours, but I don't like it. Not one bit.

I won't let this last long!

Sunday, January 08, 2006


Everything hurts. Every bone aches. Every joint numb. Every muscle cramped and screaming with each step or twist. Definitely over did it yesterday. I couldn't even get comfortable enough to sleep. I feel like I got in a fight with a bag of bricks. Like some gang of knobby robots broke into my room last night and gang probed me.

We still have hours of work in our future.

And I am damn near crippled.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Moving day

Moving is only slightly less painful than getting sodomized with a dry monkey wrench.

All day and late into the night. Mom, Dad, Cindy, Gigi, Robbie, and me. We muscled through it. Ate cheap pizza. Drank too many sodas. But just after night threatened to make any more work impossible, we finished. Said our goodbyes. And wandered off with odd limps and dangling arms, like drunk zombies in need of fresssh brainsss.

I'm never moving again!

Friday, January 06, 2006

We'll call it: home

We bought the house on 37th Street. Two blocks from the kid's school. A mile from Gigi's house. Only two blocks from the property we were supposed to buy last year, on September 9th. It would have been Jason's birthday that day. Instead, the would-be home drank 5ft of water and we were all digging out from under Katrina's long mushroom cloud.

Other properties in the area are going for 20% - 30% more than they would have priced before the storm. I refused to act out of desperation and buy into an overprice house where the value would quickly drop to pre-Katrina prices in the near future and possibly even lower once newer sub-divisions are put on the market by the glut of developers invading the market. So we watched the owners of this property drop the price week by week, until it came into our range. And I bought it.

Built in 1964. Three bedrooms. Two bathes (one green and yellow, the other pink and blue.) It isn't the house we want. It is the best house we could get for the best price. But the yard is huge and there is plenty of potential to upgrade the place. Close to prime shopping, close a mall, close to all our parents and one of the best elementary schools on The Gulf Coast.

And it beats the hell out of a FEMA trailor.

Now it is: Home.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Shadow of an eclipse

I was running on the treadmill when a flashback crossed the room. I think it was Kelly. The girl I dated before Cindy.

It has been nearly fifteen years since I saw her. The height was right. The build was right (if you factor in more than a decade of accretion.) Straight, jet black hair. Alabaster skin. Our eyes caught for a half second as she strolled to the locker room. I looked down. To avoid further contact. And noticed the shoes. Slick like a drop of oil. A hint of a strap edging toward her calf. If I sometimes have a thing for odd footwear, I owe it to Kelly. She had hundreds of shoes.

Either she didn't recognize me, or didn't want to acknowledge me. She and her shoes kept walking. Would have been too odd to strike up a conversation with such an old ghost. A flimsy shell of a relationship. Never would have held if brought it into the light of day. She was too married. Still clinging to the mental trappings of an alcoholic ex-stripper. Too much of a pathological liar. And didn't posses the wits to form even remotely believable lies.

Our tango ended when I left for college.

She suggested we try a long distance dance.

I suggested I had no trust for a woman whose every second with me constituted a violation of her vows to her husband.

And a week later, I met Cindy.

But nobody sees a ghost without skipping a heartbeat. A sudden flush of blood to the neck and ears. Like a first kiss. A first sip of champagne. Yet the moment you try to grasp that distant souvenir, it is gone. Slips into the folds of your past. Dropping you back into the cold clutch of reality where your brain reminds your loins that you can't, and shouldn't, go back.

I watch the slow shadow of a mental eclipse creep across my sun and disappear into the locker room.

My vision returns.

I look up again. And silently finish my run.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Let loose the bird!

The Turkish Health Ministry reported that country's first battle with the H5 mutation of Bird Flu. President Ahmet Necdet Sezer authorized a tactical strike by the Türk Silahlı Kuvvetleri (Turkish Armed Forces) on H5. Which resulted in the country's worst defeat in a decade.

Studies on the genetic sequence of the viruses from tissue samples taken from H5 indicated they were "very similar" to H5N1 viruses found in birds in China, the organization said.
H5, high off of its stellar victory, fled into the country side, leaving the Türk Silahlı Kuvvetleri to licks it wounds and plan for another day.

Godzilla and King Ghidorah were unavailable for comment.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Behold: Scamitics

Scam - noun - a fraudulent or deceptive act or operation.

Politics - noun - a: the art or science of government b: the art or science concerned with guiding or influencing governmental policy c: the art or science concerned with winning and holding control over a government

Scam + politics = Scamitics: noun - a: the art of deceptively guiding and influencing government

Need a good example? Look no further than fabricated "distance" between the Bush Administration and today's self-confessed taker of bribes, tax evader, fraudster, and general maker of corruption: Jack Abramoff.

This guy was the Patron Saint Of Fund Raising for the GOP. He bought a restaurant (Signatures in D.C.) where he could freely wine and dine public officials. He had not one, but FOUR skyboxes for sporting events (at a cost of $1M per year) where he could spend a few intimate hours watching games of skill with public officials. He raised somewhere in the neighborhood of a quater million dollars for the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign, “And I haven’t even started making phone calls,” he told the Times. Not to mention the golf trips to SCOTLAND and $90,000 "vacations" to RUSSIA. All of it involving the GOP.

And today he confessed his guilt to charges including: conspiracy, honest services fraud, mail fraud, conspiracy and tax evasion stemming from influence-peddling scandals in Washington. Abramoff is also cooperating in a bribery investigation involving lawmakers, their aides and members of the Bush administration.

This, of course, is only the START. By some count, his fall from grace could drag down at least twenty members of Congress. And with little stretch of the imagination, this could reach all the way up to the top. Yes, the top. Duyba, Cheney, and Dark Sith Lord Rove.

And somehow, SOMEHOW, Tony Snow gets up on podium today and tries to convince us that Abramoff was some kind of lone gun. He was off doing his own thing, without directly meddling in the affairs of the current administration. "Sure, he was doing all kinds of illegal things, but not with us," Tony tries to say.

Scamitics at its finest. The art of deceptively guiding and influencing government. You know how I can tell they are lying these days? Their lips are moving. Behold: Scamitics.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Monday, grrr!

  • As if Katrina wasn't enough, we have this little Tropical Storm ZETA to deal with. It's JANUARY and it is still alive, swirling in the Atlantic. It started in 2005 and has lived to see 2006. Only the second tropical storm to ever do that. Yet, global warming is a "theory," they tell us. Not concrete evidence that humans are impacting the environment.
  • Northern CA is taking a beating, too. Another winter storm slamming down on them, causing mudslides and flashfloods and havok, oh my.
  • In West Virginia, there are thirteen coal miners trapped underground after some kind of accidental explosion. This one isn't going to be pretty, trust me.
  • In the OTHER Virgina, police are reporting that they discovered four bodies (father, mother, two children) in their basement with their throats cut. The discovery was made AFTER firefighters got there to put out the fire which was burning their home. Oddest of all, it was the drummer for the band Cracker that discovered the fire!
  • We got a rampaging internet bomb exploding via compromised web pages and unpatched Instant Messaging clients. It didn't strike any of our systems at work, but we've been on high alert and fielding questions all day.

Other than that, I got nothin'. Too much running around. Too many meetings. Too many plans being made with too few people to carry them out. Par for the course, on Monday.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Doe's Long Strange Trip

Albert Dorine Kranz, "Doe" to most of us, was born on Sunday, January 1st, 1920. Being so young, he did not remember the hour. But he told me it was two days before Babe Ruth was traded to the New York Yankees. And two weeks before the United States applied the Eighteenth Amendment, ratifying the Prohibition Of Alcohol. And by the time he turned ten, the world as he knew it would be in the throws of The Great Depression.

Several wars, several hurricanes, several grandchildren, and two great grandchildren later, here he is. Celebrating his 86h birthday. We talk about how the time flies by for him, and how he doesn't understand what happened to the world. Too much technology he tells me. We don't do anything with our own hands any more. We don't talk face to face any more. He didn't like the telephone. Imagine how he'd feel about instant messaging or texting on the cell?

Tom Brokaw came up with the title, "The Greatest Generation" for those folks from 1911 - 1924. And in the wake of The Big Deuce, he helped sire "The Baby Boomers." From Prohibition & World War, to Love & Peace, to the Internet & Marylin Manson, it has been a long strange trip.